Hello World….Jacob’s likes… dislikes

Over the weekend, my grand babe,  4-year-old Jacob climbed up in my lap and we  (hubby Bill, sister Jan, daughter Hope and I) sat around the kitchen table and talked about what we liked and disliked about the things going on in this old world.  He sat quietly, wrapped up in my arms, for several minutes listening intently to us talk.  Suddenly, he smiled that smile and his  mouth went into overtime telling us to ‘be quiet and let him tell us what he likes and dislikes about his Mommy.’   I sat him up  straight in my lap and asked him, “Jacob, what do you like best about your Mommy and give me 10 things you like about her.”  I had a pad and pen laying on the table and as he began to speak, I listed each item.

Number 1 and 2:     Hugs and kisses

Number 3:    She feeds me good food

Number 4:    She lets me talk on the phone to granny and my friends

Number 5:    She tells me what to do.

Number 6:    She takes me to school every day.

Number 7 and 8:    She snuggles with me at bedtime when she reads  me a book

Number 9:     She asks  me questions.

Number 10:   I just like her in my heart all the time.

He was so happy to tell us this and we all laughed at how animated he was in his telling.  I then asked him this question, “Jacob, tell me 10 things you don’t like about your Mommy.”  and this was his response.

Number 1:     Don’t like it when mommy gets mad.

Number 2:    Don’t like her to yell.

Number 3:    Don’t like her to spank me.

Number 4:    Don’t like her to put peanut butter on me…(She puts a dab on the end of his nose like she does the dog when she is playing with him.)

Number 5:    Don’t like her to ‘glue’ chip on me.   (She gives him chips to eat and when he finishes, if he hasn’t eaten  all the chips, she licks them and sticks them to his forehead playing with him) 

Number 6:    Don’t like her to put ‘glue’ on me….. (Spit on a napkin to wipe dirt or smudge off him)

Number 7:    Don’t like to be locked in jail….   ??????  (she had no idea what he meant by that…he has never been to a jail.)

Number 8:    Don’t like mommy to   lock me  outside.     (They have a fenced in backyard and on cleaning day, she puts both boys outside in the yard and locks the sliding glass door so she can clean house and watch them at the same time.)

Number 9:    Don’t like mommy to put jelly on me…. (When putting jelly on pancakes, she sometimes wipes a smudge on his cheeks or lips or the end of his nose…playing with him.)

Number 10:   Don’t like mommy putting cheeto’s on me.  (When eating sandwiches with cheeto’s, she sometimes dips them in coke and  sticks them on his cheeks or the back of his hands as she is cleaning up, playing with him)

We all laughed as he finished his dislikes and he smiled like he had the most fun telling his story. With that little face beaming like he had won an academy award, I asked him if there were any more secrets he wanted to tell and he  smiled the biggest smile and said, “Nope, that is everything I like and dislike about Mommy.”     Grandpa smiled and ruffed his hair and said, “Well, boy, you seemed to enjoy telling all that about your Mommy.”  He smiled bigger and said, “I did, I sure did!”

What fun it is to include the little ones in the conversation and see the joy of them thinking they have taken a step into the adult world when all the time, we took a step into the world of a child and learned some things we didn’t know;     just by listening…….

Psalms 127:3

Hello World… Virtuous Woman

My Mama is 83 years young and still going like a 43-year-old.  She has the most beautiful head of white hair that you have ever seen.   She is a virtuous woman and the heart of her husband did safely trust in her, so that he had no need of spoil.  She did him good and not evil all the days of his life.  Daddy passed away some 15 years ago and Mom has stayed faithful to his memory all these years.   When she was in her mid-30, he had a heart attack and she had to go to work to make a living.  She had never worked a day away from home in her life until this happened and had no work skills other than taking care of 4 children and a husband all the days of her life.  She cooked, cleaned and dressed us kids and took care of all the chores around the house.  She had no TV, no car and very little money.  She would rise up early to cook a big breakfast to feed us kids before school and send Dad off to work with his lunch packed sitting right next to ours on the counter.

She never complained, she never smoked or took a drink, and I never heard her speak an unkind word to anybody when I was young and at home.  She made us walk the caulk line and home work was the first thing on her agenda daily.  Report cards had to come home with all A’s and B’s or you didn’t go anywhere till the next report card came home with all A’s and B’s on it. Her home was immaculate. Her clothes washed and ironed. Her bed’s made daily and the hardwood floors were mopped and waxed every Wednesday rain or  shine.

She made our clothes….that is she made my clothes and my 2 sisters clothes.  We didn’t wear store-bought clothes like other kids.  When she had to go to work, my Aunt Eddy got her a job where she worked in a plant.  She worked swing shift thirty years and retired when she was 65 years old worn out and tired.  My father passed away and she never got over it.  A couple of years later, my brother passed away and she never got over that one either.   She has seen all of her brother-n-laws and sister-n-laws die.  She has been through the death of children and grandchildren.  Her mother and dad died.  But Mom is a strong and courageous woman of God and she sees all things as in the ‘hands of the Lord’.  Strength and honor are her clothing and she rejoices in the times to come. She opens her mouth with wisdom and in her tongue is the law of kindness.   We, her children, arise and call her blessed.   She is a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.

This is my MAMA and I love her.

Hello World…..What is your Story?

Every body has a story and every body has a tail to tell.

I would like to know your story and how you feel about what life has dealt to you in the cards of life.  What is your story? So start a blog.

I have been reading some of the blogs that are written. Some are exciting, some sad, some fun, some have wonderful food ideas and some make me wonder, ‘what happened in your life to bring you to this conclusion about life?’

This is my story:      I grew up in a family of  one mom, one dad, one brother and two sisters.  I was the oldest and the one who caught most of the whippings because I was the oldest and in charge of making sure the younger ones did not get into trouble, go into the street to play,  or  climb on top of the chicken house and try to fly. 

Yes, my brother actually did that when he was 8 years old. He had the umbrella, like Mary Poppins, dressed in a white T-shirt and shorts with a towel tied around his neck so he would have a cape like Superman.   Boy, did I get a whipping for that one…… All I did was tie the towel for him and hold the ladder while he climbed on top of the chicken house.   At 10, I didn’t think anyone would get hurt and nobody would know what we had done.  The lady next door saw us and called mom and told on us.  We were so mad, until Mom gave me the whipping and held him like he was a new-born baby. That was the day I knew she liked him more than me.

Our baby sister, Joan, was the spoiled one.  When the rest of us got a whipping for minor things like swinging from tree vines across the deep ditch out back of the neighbor’s house, she would get a popsicle and hugged for behaving.  She was only three and could not hold the vine like the rest of us, was the only reason she didn’t try to swing.  And when we built the kudzu house in the neighbor’s yard, she was the tattle tail who told Mom we had a knife as large as a machete cutting the vines.  The time we all decided, to cross the street, to build a hut in the woods from all the cardboard from the store behind our friends house and she ran to tell Mom we were leaving her to stand guard in the yard while we crossed the busy street….she got a big cookie.

But poor Jan, the middle sister, she wasn’t as lucky as our brother.  She had a terrible temper when she didn’t get her way and  she caused herself and me many whacks across the legs with a hickory-stick that could have been avoided.  All she would have had to do was keep her mouth shut and not tell the whole story on what we had been up too. But no, she would get mad and detail every thing that we even though about doing.  I remember one time that we built a swing using a rope from daddy’s stuff.  I climbed the tree, my brother handed me a knife, the rope and told me that he would watch for the adults so we would not get caught.  I actually had second thought while I was sitting on the limb in the top of the tree that grew on the side of the bank next to the cement driveway.  The limb hung out over the driveway so we decided we could tie the rope to the limb, get on the high side of the bank and hold on, swing around the tree to the other side of the bank.  Might not be such a good idea? Then anouther thought hit me, ‘Good idea!’

  We were having such fun until the rope, I tied, came loose while sister Jan was swinging. She fell 3 feet to the cement driveway, skint every place not covered by clothing and some places that were.. . . . . . knocked herself out cold and was bleeding profusely.  Nobody moved except baby sister who went screaming to Mom that Jan was dead;  everyone got a whipping except Jan.  She got grounded for a month which didn’t affect her one bit .. she couldn’t hardly walk the entire time.

Me?  I didn’t do nothing ever. I was the one who tried to make everyone be good. But because I was the oldest, I didn’t use good judgment most of the time and help them do what ever they asked me to.  Sooo, I got almost every whipping for everyone and grew to resent all three of them.  Even when I wasn’t doing anything, they blamed me and I got a whipping being the oldest.    Yes, being the oldest I should have  known better.  

Now years later. I look back at all the fun we had and have decided that God was taking care of us all and those whippings were good for me and them.  Discipline is always better that getting away with it.  Never know what you would turn out to be if you got away with everything you did in life…….

As an adult, I have learned that not every decission  is a good one and I should pray about it, ask Father what He thinks about it.  He said to me. Your story, My Story. Told together, working together, the story will have a better ending every time…. In His Kingdom, life is abundant and lots of fun.  This is my story and I am sticking to it. What is your story???

Have a good day!

Hello Beloved….Children Story continued….

Amber:  Her name fit her personality and life in general.  She had curly dark blond hair, blue eyes and pink cheeks. Her mouth was running most of the time once she got to know you. She didn’t put up with much from the other kids and she knew what she wanted and when she wanted it. She could stand her ground with the older kids and usually did. Nobody was going to run over her and she let everyone know it. She was loveable and sweet in the most adorning way, but she was ready always to let you know she was going to do what she was going to do.

Jandy:  A spirited blond blue-eyed cutie. She was one who could speak up and speak out with an answer you would least expect. At the Little Miss padget, she competed against some really cute girls, but standing there on stage looking like Shirley Temple, I spoke out loud to everyone around me, “That little cutey will walk away with the trophy tonight”  and she did. When asked what her name was, she chirped up with both hands on her hips and turned to the audience and stated in a loud voice, “Why my name is Jandy and I’m cute!” She was the smallest in the contest and the youngest. She had just turned three.

Hope:  Small and petite all her life, Blond curly hair that hung in ringlets all over her head when she got hot and sweaty. Learned to walk and talk before she was a year old because she had so many other kids talking and pulling her around with them during the day after she could sit alone. She was a “I love yogurt!” child who would sit on your lap, lay back like a baby doll and want you to spoon feed her even when she was 7 years old. She would laugh and smile and say, “I’m not a baby, but i want my yogurt like a baby.”

Shelly: The oldest and belonged to me. She was a little jealous to start with but after she got use to having all those ‘brothers and sisters’ she loved having them around each day. She liked to organize them into playing whatever she wanted to play and have softball games in the back yard where she could be the pitcher. She didn’t like to run bases, but she loved throwing the ball.

Jason:  Blond and bold, blue eyes and ready to obey only if caught and made to do it. He stood in the corner so much that he would come and tell me he had done something he wasn’t supposed to and go stand without being told to.  He told me once that when he was in the corner, he could be still and his mind didn’t keep him in trouble.  I just laughed and asked him what he ment. He smiled and said, ‘In the corner, I can think why I shouldn’t have done that.”

Brandon:  Dark hair, dark eyes – cute and sweet as he could be. His smile would disarm a nuclear weapon. He was a gentle spirit and happy child. He was never in trouble and most of the time he was laughing and cutting up with the girls who thought he was a “star” right out of the movie magazine. He was my ‘helper’ most of the time because I could ask him to do something and he would get it done immediately.

Kara: If dolls could come to life-like Panchito then she was one who had.  At three she was the lovely child. Obedient in all things, smiling all the time, happy to do whatever she was told to do and did it with joy. Love everyone and everyone loved her. She loved any kind of food you put in front of her and never quarled with anyone about any thing. If you spoke harsh in front of her, tears would jump into her eyes until you made it clear that it had nothing to do with her.

Jessica:  The girl with fire in her soul. She was the one who addressed everyone else with “My way or else”. Whatever she wanted to do, everyone else had to want to do it to or she would talk them all into it very shortly. She was sweet but firm. She wanted everyone to do it right and right now.  When I would tell the group something, she would take command and make sure it was done. She never asked for approval. She just took charge. I worked that to my advantage many times.

All these kids were the best children in the world. I never had any trouble out of any of them and they all were obedient for the seven years they stayed with me. They all got along together and when we went on outings, they all obeyed every thing I told them. It was like having just two kids instead of 8 because they all wanted to be together and play together so they kind of policed themselves and each other so they could be together. We went on trips to the swimming pool, picnics at the park, the lake swimming,  the library, grocery shopping – where one woman asked me, “are all those your kids” and before I could answer all of them said, “YES” and we just kept walking. When we got to the car, they all just hollered and slapped each other on the back and giggled at me. I told them, “she thinks you all belong to me personally, y’all know that don’t you?” and they all said, “Uh Huh as they shook their heads up and down. “WE are your kids all day every day five days a week, the oldest one chirped up and they all laughed so hard that I began to laugh too.

It was a wonderful 7 years.

Hello Beloved……An Adventure Story about Children…

continued from  yesterday…..

Their Mom, and I will call her “Mommy B” smiled and relaxed. She knew what I knew, she had just found a baby sitter for her children. She told me she had to go back to work and she wanted to go back to work. She said she just could not handle three kids. I asked her where the other child was and she said, “At school. She is older than these two by a few years..I just need your help, you don’t know how much I need your help.”

She began telling me about losing her son in an accident.  They had a family outing and the two-year old baby boy was supposed to be asleep in the house. They were all playing outside and one of the older kids had left the door open to the car. Somehow the baby boy had gotten up and outside without anyone noticing and climbed into the back seat of the car and was playing. He fell asleep in the backseat. Someone had closed the door on the car without seeing the baby and he was not found until after he had gone to be with Jesus. They could not bring him back and she had gotten pregnant with this baby too soon and it was very hard coping with all the stress of loss and gain  and living like she felt like she had to live. She had to work… So I began taking care of her two girls, my one 8-year-old, and another friends two girls ages 3 and 6 and Debbie’s little girl age 3 and her son age 6.  I now have 7 children all under 9 years old five days a week plus my own  24/7. I prayed, “Lord, give me strength to do this and keep me in the center of your will as I take care of all these kids for their mom’s and for You.”

The first month was exciting and a large learning experience. The three-year olds were in pre-school till noon, the others in school till 2:30 and I had the baby from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.Each morning began with prayer and rocking the baby while I gave her morning bottle getting her ready to sleep from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.  Like clock work, as soon as she finished her bottle and got burped, she would fall asleep and stay that way until 10. She would whine and I would change her diaper and give her another bottle and back to sleep she would go until 12:30. This repeated all day long until 4:30 and at 4:30 she would wake up and whine till I picked her up and rock her, sang and talked to her and read a baby book to her and the kids would want to hold her and kiss and love on her –I would always say “No, she it too small for you kids to be playing with…. Leave her be and just talk to her if you want too.”

They would all sit on the floor together and I would read to them while I rocked the baby and tell them stories about the bible. Sometimes we would all play board games and then we would have a snack just before their parent came to pick them up. We began to meld together as a family, the kids and me. The began to pick out a name to call me, the younger ones called me Mo-ma, the older ones called me  MAJo but when the baby got old enough to begin to talk – she called me  “mama 2”.

That was my fault. She began talking at a very early age: 6 1/2 month old she said her first word. “No”. I would not let any of the kids pick her up or hold her and I would always say “No” every time they came near her. She was so tiny, I was afraid one of them would drop her or hurt her in some way so I was always saying “No” or “NO, NO”–so her first word was “No”.  At 8 months she was saying everyone’s first name and calling me ‘mama’. I would say “no, I am not your mama, your mama is the one who picks you up each afternoon and takes you home.” She would smile and say, “Mama” and point to me. My daughter would say, “This is my mama and you have a mama two. You go home with your mama at night” I spoke up and said, “Yes, she is your Mama at home and I am your mama two here.”  From that day on she called me “Mama two”.

Life with all the kids was so much fun. In the summer, we would go  to the Public Pool. I took the younger one’s to swim lessons, including the baby. She learned to swim by the time she was 2 years old. She almost caused me to have heart failure when she was three and her oldest sister, age 11, was in charge of watching her while I went to the bathroom. I came out and asked where’s Hope? and nobody knew where she was. I looked everywhere, asked the life guard if he had seen her, and the people near us and no one had. Suddenly, I heard this little scream of laughter and looked up on the high dive and there she stood at the edge looking down with arms raised like she was going to dive. The life Guard jumped up and hollered “NO, don’t jump”, just as she jumped from the high dive right into the deepest end of the pool. You could hear peels of laughter, screams of ‘OH NO”, gasps from every body there….. My heart stopped as I watched that tiny body hit the water like a professional diver and in moments come up laughing and clapping her hands. Her sister swam out and got her and brought her back to me where I immediately wrapped her in a towel and hugged her so tight she was gasping for breath.  I pulled the towel back from her as I was drying her off, she squealed, “Let’s do it again, Let’s do it again” ….I wanted to cry… but I smiled and said, “Let don’t and say we did.” and laughed with her as I hugged her tightly.

This was just the beginning of the most intriguing adventures………

I will tell you about each child I kept in the next Adventure…..


Hello Beloved……A Story for Children…

A young mother, baby crying, house upside down, clothes needing washing, dishes piled in the sink to the top of the window sill, phone ringing suddenly raised both hands in the air and exclaimed,  “I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN IF IT WAS GOING TO BE EASY TO RAISE KIDS, IT NEVER WOULD HAVE STARTED WITH SOMETHING CALLED LABOR!”

Do you sometimes feel like that? Let me tell you a story:  Twenty seven years ago, a dear lady I did not know, someone who would become I bestest friend knocked on my front door with a 3-year-old in toe and a  7 week old baby in her arms. As I opened the door, I noticed the tired glassy eyes of someone who had been crying. I smiled and said, “Yes, may I help you?”  I opened the screen door and asked her to come and sit down. Holding a tiny baby in those tired arms made me want to reach out and take the baby and carry her to the sofa for the dear lady. To my surprise, she handed me the baby and walked in dragging the small child on her left hand. She hurried to the sofa and sat down moving the 3-year-old to the floor to sit down and with a rush she began talking.

I heard from a neighbor that you are going to be keeping kids and I need someone nearby to keep my girls while I go back to work. My company won’t hold my job any longer and I need to work, we need  me to be working and I need me to be working because I can’t, can’t” and suddenly she laughed and took a breath. “I am looking for a baby sitter. …  Are you interested?”  I introduced myself and she did the same. I pulled back the blanket and looked down into the face of the smallest baby I had ever seen in my life. She had a stock of blond curls and the cutest heart-shaped lips I had ever seen in my life. As I took the blanket from around her, I could see the tiny tiny fingers curled up in tiny fist. I though to myself: this baby can’t be more than a few hours old as small as she is. So I asked, “How old is the baby?” She is 7 weeks old and I know she is small, but all my babies have been small. Her name is Hope. My eyes could not help but mist up as I though “She really needs me to help her with this.”  I smiled at the 2-year-old and said, “and what is your name, honey?” 

She hid her face behind her dolly and whispered, “Amber and I am 3” I smiled back and reached out to her with my free hand and beckoned her to come to me. I wanted to know just how shy she really was. To  my surprise, she got up and walked to me, leaned up against me and said, “That is my baby sister. Her is so cute and I love her.” I kissed her on the top of the head and said, “Yes, me too.”

Their Mom, and I will call her “Mommy B” smiled and relaxed. She knew what I knew, she had just found a baby sitter for her children. She told me she had to go back to work and she wanted to go back to work. She said she just could not handle three kids. I asked her where the other child was and she said, “At school. She is older than these two by a few years..I just need your help, you don’t know how much I need your help.”

To be continued…

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